Fedora Doesn't Yet Enable F2FS File-System Support
Written by Michael Larabel in Fedora on 21 December 2014 at 09:07 PM EST. 34 Comments
FEDORA --
While F2FS is a promising open-source file-system looking to live up to its name as being the Flash-Friendly File-System, one major distribution not yet willing to enable it within its kernel is (surprisingly) Fedora.

I continue to be running Fedora 21 on a number of systems and continue to enjoy the release. Fedora 21 is easily my favorite and arguably best release since probably Fedora Core 3, or ever for this Red Hat sponsored Linux distribution. While Fedora is often referred to as being a distribution living on the "bleeding edge" of upstream Linux and often shipping with experimental / next-generation open-source components, surprisingly it's still not shipping a kernel with F2FS support.

This isn't about F2FS being the default file-system or anything along those lines, but rather the distribution ships with no F2FS file-system kernel module support. Fedora does ship with an f2fs-tools package for providing the user-space F2FS support for creating new file-systems, etc, but the support on the kernel side is not present.

The generic Fedora Linux kernels (at least as of the latest on F21, Linux 3.17.6) goes without enabling support for building the F2FS module. Only this weekend I realized it when going to conduct some new flash-based benchmarks and was planning to use Fedora for this flash file-system comparison and started only to realize its generic kernel lacks this support. Ubuntu and other Linux distributions meanwhile have long shipped with the F2FS module being built.


There have been multiple Fedora bug reports as Bug #922966 and Bug #972446 but the issue comes down to the distribution maintainers having no plans to enable the F2FS support within the kernel, thus the bugs get marked as "CLOSED WONTFIX". While Fedora users can always resort to building their own kernels the way they wish, I find this rather surprising given that Fedora long has shipped with experimental features from the optional Wayland support to being one of the first distributions with optional install-time support for Btrfs and other early Btrfs functionality, among many other firsts for Fedora in the Linux world.

Have you played around with F2FS at all? Share your experiences within the forum. While still an experimental file-system, in all of my F2FS benchmarks since its introduction into the mainline kernel have been quite good and this originally Samsung sponsored file-system has shown much promise for being an interesting Linux flash file-system for the future.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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